Ten days before the Southampton show opens, Fairline pipped rivals to the post and held the press launch of their new Squadron 74 in London on September 3.

Ten days before the Southampton show opens, Fairline pipped rivals to the post and held the press launch of their new Squadron 74 in London on September 3.

Attaining reported speeds of over 31 knots on a trouble-free delivery trip to the capital from Ipswich, the 1400hp Cat-powered flagship is the largest boat in the Fairline range, measuring 22.69m overall and displacing some 40 tonnes light.

Designed around the new 1500hp Caterpillar and MAN diesels, the new Squadron will be available in a four-cabin, three heads version as standard, although the three-cabin option allows for a pair of dressing rooms in the midships master cabin. The galley and wheelhouse can both be screened off from the saloon and dining area.

In a new policy to be introduced for all new Fairline models over 60ft, this first boat off the line is to be held by Fairline for six months, during which the company’s test team plans to run it for 200 engine hours and trial the boat in as many conditions as possible. Only then will it be handed over to its owner. This particular boat will also be exhibited at the Southampton and Dusseldorf shows, while boat no. 3 will appear at London. Fairline chairman Derek Carter told MBY that the first six Squadron 74s are sold. Production is expected to settle down at eight to ten 74s a year, accounting for some 10% of the company’s turnover.

Fairline also took the opportunity to present to the press the 10,000th boat built by the company in its 35-year history: a Squadron 65, the 82nd (and last) of the type. Volvo Penta’s Ian Benning made a presentation to Derek Carter to mark the occasion, describing Fairline as their biggest customer worldwide, having bought some 16,000 engines.